Parkmoor Raceway


I recently purchased a new home with a back yard large enough to set up an outdoor raceway. I've seen some wonderful garden railroads built outdoors using G gauge track and rolling stock, and thought that the same thing might be possible for slot car racing.

I choose to use the Carrera 1:24 Scale Evolution Track System because of its stainless steel rails and secure joint locking system. Carrera track is wider than normal Scalextric Sport 1:32 scale track, so both 1:32 and 1:24 scale cars can be raced.



Pilot Project

To test my theory I first constructed a small layout over the Fourth of July weekend. I left the track set up for the entire weekend, but then tore it down the following week.

Backyard Racing on Carrera 1:24 Scale Slot Car Track


My yard is not perfectly level, but the track conformed to the slight changes in elevation, and made for a more interesting layout.

Turn Esses Follow the Contour of the Yard


The photograph below shows some close racing between a pair of Scalextric Sport 1:32 scale Ford GT40 slot cars exiting the esses. Note the extreme width of the Carrera track system. This extra track width makes it possible to also race larger 1:24 scale slot cars.

Ford GT40 Racing Action


My pilot project was a complete success. The hot summer sun did not damage the track, and the morning dew did not corrode the stainless steel rails. The front straight measured 20 feet in length, something that would be very difficult to do indoors unless you have a really large basement or attic.

Initial Parkmoor Raceway Pilot Project


Expanded Raceway

With the earlier success of my small pilot project, I decided to build a larger layout for the Labor Day weekend. This track I planned to leave set up for the entire month of September. I wanted to get a better idea of what would happen with longer exposure to the weather.

Expanded Carrera 1:32 Scale Raceway - Labor Day 2005


Below we see two 1:18 Scale Ninco Go-Karts. Michael Schumacher leads Eddie Irvine though Turn 1 at the end of the long straight.

Ninco Go-Karts - Michael Schumacher & Eddie Ervine


Michael and younger brother Ralf battle it out in a pair of Ninco 1:32 scale Formula 1 cars during the Labor Day Formula 1 Feature Event.

Michael & Ralf Schumacher - Dueling Ninco Formula 1 Slot Cars


As you can see, the only drawback I encountered during this longer 1-month test session was the height of the un-mown grass.

Ninco Formula 1 Racing Action - Ferrari vs. Jordan


Vintage historic races along with Formula 1, GT endurance races and even kart racing were all possible on my outdoor raceway. Below we see a couple of gnomes from a nearby magic mushroom farm stopping by for an exciting vintage event.

Garden Gnomes - Magic Mushroom Ranchers


Future Plans

Over the winter I've purchased additional Carrera track and borders so that this coming Spring I can build the layout shown below.

Carrera 12× 30 1:32 Scale Garden Raceway


This track is considerably larger than my first two layouts. It measures 12' × 30' feet in size, but then that's the nice thing about an outdoor raceway. You can build a track with much longer and faster straights than would normally be possible indoors.

Carrera Wireless Infra-Red Controller System


As the track grows larger in size the Carrera Wireless Controller System becomes a must. This system will allow racers to move around the circuit without having to contend with long hand control lead wires getting tangled up.

  

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Page last updated on 25-Apr-2017
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